Some information about laptop docks
There are two types of docks available for laptops:
- Docks that require your laptop to be open and running to use and use a low performance method of connection. These docks are available for almost any laptop and use a single USB cable to hook up. I really won’t recommend them for a couple of reasons: They’re low performance and they require that the laptop be sitting open and have the laptop screen on when plugged into them. This means if you want to type on your other screen with a real keyboard and mouse, you’ll have to have your laptop sitting out and open on the desk.
- Docks that have a dedicated port and sit in a cradle. These are high performance and do not require your computer to be open when in use. In addition these docks usually include significantly more connectivity options. This is the type of dock I use every day here at work. I recommend this style over the USB style.
If you want to go with a cradle style dock then that limits your options. There aren’t many 17” laptops compatible with a cradle style of dock. The Dell Latitude laptop series is the best choice at this time. Their larger size laptop has a 15.6” screen.
If you really want a larger computer and don’t mind having your laptop sitting out while docked or just want to skip the dock all together, then you have more options.
USB docks like the the Targus Universal USB Dock allow almost any size and style computer the ability to have a dock.